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Random Bit of Progress, Duly Noted

Fable of the Staples

A ride well done


So we whisked Charlie into the white car soon as he got off the bus and went, in the pouring rain, to the pediatricia, to have the staples removed. The nurse practitioner had her head lamp ready and the staple remover the hospital had given us. She felt the back of Charlie's head over and over and said, puzzled, 'I can't find any staples.'

Whereupon, Charlie found himself sitting in a chair with three adults inspecting the back of his head and giving him an extensive cranial massage. The nurse found the cut and noted it was healing very nicely. But no staples.

'That's the first time I've ever had this happen,' she said to me after Charlie (who had said a fast good-bye) and Jim had departed. I said I'd do a careful inspection of Charlie's room in case he had somehow gotten them out himself.

We went to get some groceries and Charlie helped to bag some things and carried them out, with a smile. But he was stricken at home when we looked at his food schedule and saw that Monday was a groceries day, not a burrito one.

He moped and I went into the kitchen and heated up some fish sticks (which Charlie has refused for years) and some French fries. Charlie came in and munched on apples while everything was in the oven. Without any ado, he ate small bites of fish sticks, potatoes, more fruit, got himself something to drink.

Then we went on a walk in a misty rain and across our field which resembled more a mottled, semi-frozen pond of snow, slush and dead grass amid which, Charlie found the one plastic bottle to step on (it made an extremely loud crunch). Once home, he went eagerly up to his room and settled down, cozy and content, with his iPad and blue blanket, and grinned me good night.

I'll let you know if I find the staples.




Could he have taken them out himself? Wouldn't that have been awfully painful? I don't suppose he would respond to an open-ended story about a boy who had uncomfortable metal things in his head and decided to do something about it, leaving the "something" a non-judgmental question for Charlie to answer?


I'll bet he picked them out himself: you had written, " ... Saturday night, he had stayed up past midnight, vexed about the staples ..." that's probably when he did it. They were probably irritating him tremendously by that point, itching and poking. They'll probably be pretty hard to find, but I'm sure that's what happened. One must never underestimate the powers of Charlie!

Kristina Chew

@Monica, I was thinking the same!

@Jill, it must have been painful -- I really can't figure out how he got them out, frankly. I don't think he had any idea what they were (we didn't show them to him before them in his head...).


Now that I've read a little about how one needs a special surgical removal tool, I too am astounded at Charlie's abilities! My best wishes for a swift and total healing.

Brenda (mamabegood)

YIKES! I am now twinging all over.

Nurse Practitioner Salary

I'm so glad that Charlie is okay from all of that. I have a son who is autistic also and it drove me to pursue a career as a nurse practitioner. It's has changed my life in so many ways. If anyone you know is interested in pursuing a career as a nurse practitioner, I found this site to be very helpful:

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